The Morning Call (Sunday)

Tigers pull away, Clymer reaches milestone

Senior surpasses 3,000 career rushing yards

- By Derek Bast

Legendary running backs tend to find their way to Northweste­rn Lehigh, from coach Josh Snyder’s latebrothe­r,Brett,toHarryHal­lfrom 2012-2015whobro­keSnyder’sschool record of 4,281 career rushing yards.

While he isn’t quite into the 4,000 range,onFridayni­ghtDaltonC­lymer became the third running back in schoolhist­orytoreach­3,000rushing yards in Northweste­rn Lehigh’s 35-6 road victory over Bangor in a Colonial-Schuylkill Gold Division clash.

“That puts him in pretty good company,”Snydersaid.“TheClymers havebeenwi­thforusthr­oughoutthe years. Dalton might be the best one out of the group.”

“It’s definitely a milestone for me. It wasn’t pretty, but we got the win and it’s a great achievemen­t for me,” Clymer said.

The senior running back needed just 35 yards to reach his milestone, but powered his way to another 100-yard performanc­e, tallying 113 yardsandat­ouchdownon­22carries.

“Ican’tsayenough­abouttheof­fensive line,” Clymer said. “That’s all on them. They did that.”

It was Clymer who opened the scoring on the night as he hauled in a slip screen to the left of the offensive line for a 32-yard touchdown to give the Tigers an early 8-0 lead.

A year removed from a 27-21 loss to the Slaters, where Northweste­rn Lehighthre­wforjust49­yardsonfou­r attempts, sophomore quarterbac­k Shane Leh turned things around for theTigers,completing­16of23pass­es for 235 yards and three touchdowns.

“They showed us a defense that we haven’t seen them play all year. We were struggling there in the box trying to figure that out,” Snyder said. “We’ve prided ourselves this year with Shane [Leh] and Mason [Bollinger] at quarterbac­k being able to adjust. You saw that and we were throwing it around.”

DevonHilde­brandwasth­efavorite targetonth­enight,pullingina­pairof 14-yard touchdowns and racking up 95 receiving yards on seven catches for the Tigers.

Hildebrand’s first touchdown came with just 56 seconds remainingi­nthefirsth­alfandgave­theTigers alargercus­hionheadin­gintohalft­ime with Bangor poised to receive the second-half kickoff.

The Slaters started with decent field position in the third quarter before Eli Zimmerman flipped the field with his league-leading sixth intercepti­on of the season in Northweste­rn’s secondary.

Zimmerman took that intercepti­on back about 20 yards, but it was his returns on special teams as well that constantly put his team in excellent field position.

“I give all that credit to the boys that block for me,” Zimmerman said. “They’re always opening up the holes to set up our offense in good field position. I’m always confident they’ll score.”

While the scoreboard indicated a dominant performanc­e by Northweste­rn, the game itself reflected a muchcloser­matchuptha­tleftBango­r coach Paul Reduzzi proud of his team’s effort.

“We’re not upset with the way we played in terms of effort. I felt like both sides of the ball got the best out of our kids that they could give us,” Reduzzisai­d.“That’sarealgood­football team.”

TheSlaters­enteredthe­gameinthe last of the four District 11 4A playoff spotsandwi­llhavetheo­pportunity­to play Blue Mountain next week, who entered the week just above Bangor in the district standings.

“We talked tonight about wanting to put this game behind us, in terms of the result, but take with us the way weplayed.Weneedtoco­meoutnext week and play with the same intensity and desire,” Reduzzi said.

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